Advocacy Messages on Rights-Based National Child Protection Systems

Issa B. Yusuf, head of Bakaro community, has changed the way he used to see children and women, Bauchi, Nigeria. Child Protection Committees, supported by Save the Children, address problems facing the most vulnerable children and families in 36 communities across three states. Child Protection Committees (CPCs) are formed with equal representation from elected men, women, boys, and girls. Photographer's Credit: Amadou Mbodj/Save the Children.

These messages are meant to help Save the Children country, regional and advocacy offices as well as Headquarters in advocating for National and Community Child Protection Systems.

The messages are intended to provide simple guidance. They must be tailored to the actual situation on the ground, taking into account needs and capacities, the security situation, relations with the government and other parties, and collaboration with UN agencies and partners.

Save the Children defines child protection as the measures and structures to prevent and respond to abuse, neglect, exploitation and violence affecting children. In the messages when the terms violence is used it includes abuse, neglect, exploitation and violence.

These advocacy messages are linked to the CPI priority areas and should be read in conjunction with SC standard advocacy messages developed for Child Protection in Emergencies, Children without Appropriate Care and Children on the Move.

  1. National and community-based child protection systems should be promoted to provide a comprehensive, sustainable and coordinated solution to protect all children, without any discrimination, especially those at risk of being or who have been exposed to violence, abuse, exploitation or neglect in any form.
  2. Laws must be in place to ban all forms of abuse, neglect, exploitation and violence against children in all settings in line with the UN CRC and other international human rights and humanitarian standards
  3. A coordinated national strategy, policy or plan of action to stop abuse, neglect, exploitation and violence against children should be in place.
  4. Preventive and responsive child friendly services should be in place at the community, district and central levels
  5. Adequate funding should be allocated protect children and support their families including within the child’s community
  6. Regulation of services and service providers should be in place including through accreditation and licensing, enforced minimum standards, and independent monitoring.
  7. Child-friendly reporting systems should be in place and accessible to all children.
  8. A child-friendly justice system should be established to ensure that it is respectful of children’s rights, that laws are respected and perpetrators brought to justice.
  9. States should listen to girls and boys of all ages and involve them in the design, implementation and monitoring of policies and programmes that address abuse, neglect, exploitation and violence.
  10. An aware and supportive public should be engaged and involved in the efforts to prevent and respond to abuse, neglect, exploitation and violence
  11. The capacity of all those who work with and for children should be enhanced
  12. States should develop and implement systematic national data collection and research on abuse, neglect, exploitation and violence against children

For full advocacy messages click here.

For information please contact Roberta Cecchetti, Advocacy Manager, Child Protection Initiative: roberta@savethechildren.ch

December 2011